Our gut, or digestive system, is an important part of our body that breaks down all foods and extracts the nutrients to deliver throughout the body. A healthy digestive system also also enhances the nervous system and promotes healthy hormones which ultimately ensures overall health. Poor gut health might cause stomach disturbance, weight change, food intolerances, and maybe even skin irritation. One could always improve and maintain their gut health by simply making some changes in their food consumption and lifestyle. Here are 7 ways of how to do it:

1. Change Your Diet

Consuming a variety of wholefoods and cutting down taking processed foods is the most fundamental change to improve gut health.  Fiber rich foods such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables can help to get things to move more smoothly throughout the guts. Fibers can only be digested by certain bacterias in the guts, consuming more fiber can help promote their growth to improve digestion. Avoid processed foods and products that contain high amounts of caffeine or alcohol as they are not healthy for the guts in the long run. 

2. Consume Probiotic Products

Probiotics are the microorganisms that are found to promote gut health by supporting the growth and balance of digestive cells and bacteria in the intestines. Probiotic products can be found in a variety of cultured milk drinks, yoghurt and kefir that can be often seen in grocery stores. Fermented foods such as miso, kimchi, and sourdough bread also contain probiotics to help ease digestion. Take appropriate consumption of probiotic products daily to ensure optimal gut health. 

3. Oral Cleanliness 

Oral hygiene does more than just keeping teeth and gums clean, but also keeping the guts healthy as well. People with bad oral hygiene are more likely to suffer from inflammation in their guts. According to MDPI, the bacteria in our mouth can result in gut disease that is far worse than gut inflammation. This is why professionals often suggest people clean their mouth before consuming every meal. 

4. Having Enough Sleep

The gut serves us more than just digesting food, it also helps to regulate the overall vital process by connecting to some of the most important nervous systems. Sleep and appetite do correlate with each other as it regulates the hormones that help us decide whether or not to be hungry. The number of microbes that help us digest foods can be increased while we are sleeping. Thus, sleeping reflects in our food cravings, digestion, weight gain and our satiety feeling to food. 

5. Exercise Regularly

Exercise promotes healthier cardiovascular health and results more efficiently in weight management. The intestines consistently contract and relax during exercise, this will increase the efficiency for the wastes to pass through the digestive system. Cardiovascular exercise also helps to boost the growth of butyrate, a bacteria that produces fatty acid. Butyrate can reduce the risks of having gut inflammation and also preventing gastrointestinal disorders such as constipation. It is recommended to perform at least a 75-minute cardiovascular exercise per week to stay in great shape.

6. Quit Smoking 

Fist crashing cigarettes for quit smoking concept

Smoking contributes to every harm to the human body. Aside from lung health and liver disease, smoking also hurts the gastrointestinal system. Smoking causes Crohn’s disease, an inflammation phenomenon that occurs in the digestive tract. People who suffer from Crohn’s disease are likely to experience abdominal pain, diarrhea, malnutrition, and unexpected weight loss. In serious cases, Crohn’s disease might cause life-threatening symptoms like stomach cancer.  It is advisable that smokers who suffer from digestive issues quit smoking as soon as they can before things turn out to be worse.

7. Pay Attention To Medication

Medications are formulated to treat diseases and improve recovery, however, overdosage might result in the other way round. Antibiotics are formulated to kill bacterias, like a double-edged sword, antibiotics can kill off good and bad bacterias. On the other hand, laxatives are intended to treat constipation by flushing off everything from the intestine. Antibiotics and laxatives can interrupt the sustainability of gut microbes. Excessive consumption can cause serious intestinal infections and dehydration which probably lead to permanent internal organ damage. People who need medication are advised to seek professional consultancies from their doctors.